Thursday, October 18, 2012

Ted Hughes: Dreamers


A rare insight into the relationship Hughes had with Assia Wevil.  The fascination he developed which forced his marriage to Plath to end and for both women to end their lives in similar fashions.  Their lives have almost become a soap opera through poetry.    I remember English lessons full of poetry analysis.  No one knowing or caring who the poet was but analyzing the words they had written. Then a collection of words with 'Hughes' or 'Plath' at the top and suddenly it was like reading a page from their personal journal as the analysis is replaced by affairs, dates, names, and blame.  Something which I believe Plath, who longed for a rural life, separate from the literary 'in crowd' in London would never have wanted. 

D R E A M E R S
B Y  T E D  H U G H E S

We didn’t find her - she found us.
She sniffed us out. The Fate she carried
Sniffed us out
And assembled us, inert ingredients
For its experiment. The Fable she carried
Requisitioned you and me and her,
Puppets for its performance.

She fascinated you. Her eyes caressed you,
Melted a weeping glitter at you.
Her German the dark undercurrent
In her Kensington jeweller’s elocution
Was your ancestral Black Forest whisper -
Edged with a greasy, death-camp, soot-softness.
When she suddenly rounded her eyeballs,
Popped them, strangled, she shocked you.
lt was her mock surprise.
But you saw hanged women choke, dumb, through her,
And when she listened, watching you, through smoke,
Her black-ringed grey iris, slightly unnatural,
Was Black Forest wolf, a witch’s daughter
out of Grimm.
Warily you cultivated her,
Her jewishness, ser many-blooded beauty,
As if your dream of your dream-self stood there,
A glittering blackness, Europe’s mystical jewel.
A creature from beyond the fringe of your desk-lamp.
Who was this Lilith of abortions
Touching the hair of your children
With tiger-painted nails?
Her speech Harrods, Hitlers mutilations
Kept you company, weeding the onions.
An ex-Nazi Youth Sabra. Her father
Doctor to the Bolshoi Ballet.
She was helpless too.
None of us could wake up.
Nightmare looked out at the poppies.
She sat there, in her soot-wet mascara,
In flame-orange silks, in gold bracelets,
Slightly filthy with erotic mystery -
A German
Russian Israeli with the gaze of a demon
Between curtains of black Mongolian hair.
After a single night under our roof
She told her dream. A giant fish, a pike
Had a globed, golden eye, and in that eye
A throbbing suman foetus -
You were astonished, maybe envious.

I refused to interpret. I saw
The dreamer in her
Had fallen in love with me and she did not know it.
That moment the dreamer in me
Fell in love with her, and I knew it.
 
 
// bloglovin' :: goodreads




Share:
© Elle Kayem | All rights reserved.
Blog Design Handcrafted by pipdig